Once again yours truly manages to bag himself the blog for a damn above average episode of Lost :-) I'll probably lose my rights for next week's, which is slightly disappointing cause, even though I haven't seen any previews, I can imagine it'll be fantastic. But back to the here and now, and this episode certainly had its share of "waw" and "bloody hell" (by now you gather I'm English). However, my one gripe with this episode was the usual "I'm psychic Desmond" - cause I still don't know what to make of it all yet, and all I can say is there better be a damn good realist explanation!
So kicking things off, my first point of interest this episode was Locke's increasingly weird mentality. He dissed Sayid's map as unreliability, when he's going off of a dead man's stick?! His faith in the Island is bordering on idiotic now. And then what he did to Mikhail... he's lost the plot I tellz ya, stealing C-4 and all. I did love a theory on Lostpedia though that his true motives to coming on the rescue mission are that he wishes to join the Others. He sees them as part of the Island and he wants to embrace it and become one with it in a very freakish Locke-esque kinda way.
Speaking of Mikhail and such, his information was really interesting, and I do quite enjoy the fact that he was the first one to give very plausible and real answers to some of the mysteries of the show. WHY DID HE HAVE TO DIE!!! Ahem... so yeah, he and all the Others were recruited and brought over on the sub. Which kinda confused me as they apparently only stole it from DHARMA, and considering they were meant to be on the Island long before the Initiative, that would mean that they never had a way of leaving/returning to the Island until the sonar beacon was added. That got me thinking about a hierarchy, with those predating DHARMA possibly held in higher regard as the original team before the sub allowed access to recruitment. But when they said a man recruited him, does that make Him Mr. Wayyyy-too-much-eyeliner Alpert, who recruited Juliet???? Then about that list, interesting that its those who understand the Others' ideology, throwing out naturist theories on DNA and viral stuff. In part also explains the children angle, tabula rasa means they can be moulded to conform to the Others' apparently very specific viewpoint. See I think I'm mixing these theories together rather well, even if I do say so myself. Oh and Ben isn't Him after all then, I knew it! I told you so to all of you who said I was naive for thinking there was someone above him :-p
Now to that barrier thingy. Questions that ran through my mind were many, but my main one was why would DHARMA need one? Evidently to keep out evil Hostiles, the purge was obviously a brutal war. Also, how do the Others' leave? Do they turn it off for a mo so they can pass through? Personally, my money is on underground access. Sayid's map seemed to show a lot of tunnel lines going through the barrier, similar to vent points. By the way, I've spoken to some other fans just to confirm it wasn't only me, but didn't that shot of Kate climbing the log look a little... er.... you know. Especially with Locke and Sayid either side at the bottom. I haven't seen such suggestion since the first Alien film! Very crude, Mr. Director.
I appear to have missed supposedly the main revelation this episode - Jack and Claire being half siblings - but to be honest, I didn't so much bat an Alpert eyelid. We all knew this one was coming, right? The shocker lacked punch, mainly cause ABC keep releasing guest star lists early so I knew Christian would be in her flashbacks - and I could from there easily fill in the blanks.
Now to the corny ending where Claire's plan came to fruition. Not even a bad plan actually, but typical dramatic effect reading the letter. But then! A much, much better ending happened. I sat watching pretty much as shocked as Kate was at Jack and Tom playing ball. It was brilliant to see them so close to the Others' home. I never imagined we'd get so far so early into the Season (actually though we're on 12, but it feels a lot less cause of the minibreak and stuff). Has Jack been turned? Was he just let out for the moment and was letting off steam? Does he understand the Others' ideology or was he brainwashed Room 23 style? And what does Sayid and co. plan to do now - waltz on in at sundown?
P.S. Looks like I forgot to add one little detail about Mikhail and Locke. Now I know that "the John Locke I know is para..." was an ace comment, but I wanna point out I think its overstated. I've seen a lot of "how does he know Locke more but not the other two, is Locke an Other then?" comments, and I personally think it was just a dramatic effect line. Mikhail is playing Locke with the statement, and he succeeds in manipulating him by making him throw him to the barriers. Very much like Ben, Mikhail could twist John easily. Reminded me of Further Instructions where the police kid said Locke was analysed to be an easy mark.